In late August, I thought things would slow down for me in September. Clearly, I was incorrect.

Oh well.  Here’s what I’ve been doing for the last couple of months:

  • Getting more people in on the DonorsChoose Challenge! Are you in for the WIN?
  • Work work work. Still putting in those 60 hr weeks, but a few big projects are finishing up with happy (mostly) resolutions.  If you manage people and aren’t hip to Manager Tools, then get with the podcast program!
  • I WENT TO COSTA RICA AND IT WAS AMAZING. I saw bullet ants. I saw leaf-cutter ants. I saw howler monkeys and poisonous frogs.  I quadrupled my bird life list in 4 days.  I had massive bad hair days in the humidity, was almost killed multiple times by rickety bridges and crazy drivers, and had a wonderful, wonderful time.  Costa Rica during the “green” (i.e, rainy) season was just heaven for a biologist.  I spent 4 days running around yelling “OMG W00t OMG!”
  • Did I mention that I saw leaf-cutter ants? Did I mention how GEEKED OUT I was about that?  These little animals are the dominant herbivores in this ecosystem.

Posted by Gwen Pearson

Writer. Nerd. Insect Evangelist. Have you heard the good news? BUGS!


  1. Leaf cutter ants are SO COOL! I love watching them. Was your amazing Costa Rica trip for work?

  2. Yes, which made it even better! FREE (after reimbursement) trip to CR!

  3. Awesome about the leaf cutter ants! I did my Junior seminar on them. Very cool. Also, I created a donors page for the challenge in the Nature Blog Network group as well.

  4. YAY! i remember my first trip to CR- after reading about them since my childhood, being in the presence of a giant leafcutter colony, was a humbling, near-religious experience, pure leaf-hauling bliss. So much so that it resulted in a leafcutter-themed wedding 6 years later! : )

  5. Yay on the leaf-cutter ants and all the rest. I’m glad you had a wonderful time in CR. And I know you’re really busy- but BG fans are waiting for a lot more (with lots of pictures) from your fabulous trip. I would love to see Costa Rica in the green season.

  6. A 60-hour week sounds enticing—even relaxing! We’re in the middle of harvesting and processing all our crops at the moment so we’re rather busy.

    As for ants, we have very few around our croft in Scotland—not a patch on the plethora of ants I used to see in Australia.

  7. Actually, I don’t mind physical labor that takes that much time!

    It’s the butt-sitting-in-office that I don’t like :(

    Once you get the cash for a helper, let me know and I’ll come dig taters for you.

  8. Catherine Sherman October 9, 2009 at 11:24 pm

    Very cool video! Thanks. Sounds like a fabulous trip. I saw a lot of ants in Australia and would have liked to know more about them. I was excited to see the video mentioned the KU researcher who discovered the antibiotic bacteria on the ants. I do some volunteer work with some KU entomologists.

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